The seventh release in the series Hungarian Castles
One of Hungary’s most famous castles secured its place in European history in 1566 when Commander Miklós Zrínyi and his 2,500 Hungarian and Croatian soldiers halted the advance of one hundred thousand Turks under Sultan Suleiman. The greatest sultan of the Ottoman Empire did not live to see the capture of the castle: he died two days before the siege ended and his death was kept secret. Despite the intense siege lasting over a month, Zrínyi rejected surrender and fought to the very end: at dawn on September 7 he charged forth from the castle at the head of 200 soldiers, setting a great example of selfless patriotism. Almost all of the castle’s defenders died as heroes. Szigetvár came under Turkish rule for 122 years, as evidenced by the castle’s reconstruction by the Turks and the Suleiman mosque with its truncated minaret, prayer chamber facing Mecca and fragments of Turkish, Arabic and Persian writing on the walls.